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Bill in Congress would increase housing allowance coverage for military families

WASHINGTON, D.C. — As the cost of housing continues to skyrocket, there’s a push in Congress to help military families keep up with rising costs.

A bipartisan proposal would restore the Basic Housing Allowance (BAH) to be 100 percent covered by the Defense Department (DoD).

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Currently, the DoD covers 95 percent of the BAH.

“That means out of pocket costs for military families is sometimes in excess of $200 a month, which can be a lot,” said Rep. Marilyn Strickland (D-WA), who introduced the Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) Restoration Act in the House. “This is more than a housing issue. This is about an economic security issue. How much you pay for housing affects everything else. How much you have to spend on food and other expenses.”

The legislation applies to homes on and off base.

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“Our service members and their families should not have to struggle to find and afford housing,” said Rep. Don Bacon (R-NE), a Republican co-sponsor of the House bill. “When they volunteer to put their lives on the line for their country, we should be able to guarantee that they will have access to clean and comfortable housing within the allowance they are given.”

Sen. Raphael Warnock (D-GA) is introducing a companion bill in the Senate.

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